GRACE

10431562_897005766536_6138671168477118209_nWHAT IS YOUR FIRST BEAUTY MEMORY?
I remember taking a theatre class when I was seven years old. We were asked to bring makeup and my mom tossed some random odds and ends into a Lisa Frank styled pencil box. I remember opening the clasp on a brown flat box and opening it to really see powdered makeup for the first time. I twirled the brush in the power and in long strokes, applied the blush over my face with the feathery soft brush. I then remember looking in a mirror to find that the blush was, in fact, orange in color and I resembled a pumpkin. I still have that blush in my makeup kit.

HOW HAS YOUR BEAUTY ROUTINE CHANGED OVERTIME?
I have always been a minimalist with beauty routine. This is due to equal parts good skin, my naturalist mentality, and laziness. But I have become more consistent in my beauty routine now that I’m in a new stage of my life. With a toddler and a new teaching career, I find that my body and skin can no longer depend on the (quite literally) all natural lifestyle. My stress levels are just too high. So while I still keep to the bare essentials, I find myself willing to put in the extra work to keep my skin clean and healthy.

WHERE DO YOU LOOK FOR MAKEUP AND SKINCARE RECOMMENDATIONS?
Most recently it came from a very bossy facialist, but more often I look to my sisters since we share similar skin type, tone, and a lean towards the organic lifestyle.

WHAT PRODUCTS ARE YOU LOVING RIGHT NOW?
Organic Coconut oil. I buy an enormous vat of it and massage it into my face, scalp, you name it. My skin just loves it and it’s nice to know that I’m prepared if I need to make vegan cookies.

WHEN DO YOU FEEL YOUR MOST CONFIDENT?
When I’ve been out in the sun. Something about the vitamin D and a little color to my skin makes me feel confident and glowing.

Grace is a breaching 30s teacher, wife, and mother with a flair for the dramatic, and a dual obsession with both running and food.

Want your own Beauty Biography? Write it here.

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LINDA

pc7qde227d8-kelly-jeanWHAT IS YOUR FIRST BEAUTY MEMORY?
Getting make-up at age twenty-six.

HOW HAS YOUR BEAUTY ROUTINE CHANGED OVER TIME?
Trying different products.

WHERE DO YOU LOOK FOR MAKEUP AND SKINCARE RECOMMENDATIONS?
Usually a recommendation from a friend.

WHAT PRODUCTS ARE YOU LOVING RIGHT NOW?
Aveda skincare and volumizing shampoo.

WHEN DO YOU FEEL THE MOST CONFIDENT?
After I have blow-dried my hair.

Linda is a 72-year-old who likes scrapbooking, quilting, reality shows (especially Survivor), and playing Bridge. She loves coffee,  jicama, and ginger.

Want your own Beauty Biography? Write it here.

LEXIE

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WHAT IS YOUR FIRST BEAUTY MEMORY?
Although I would typically say I have a horrible memory (thanks, kids), I think my first beauty memory would have to be of my mother, completely comfortable around my sister and me, in the nude. In our house, the bathroom door was always open, and I think it taught us to accept and feel comfortable in the beauty of our own natural bodies. Even though I am raising boys, that is a feeling and confidence I hope to pass on to them as well.

HOW HAS YOUR BEAUTY ROUTINE CHANGED OVER TIME?
I do not have the time that I used to. With three kids, I now appreciate the moments I have to focus solely on myself.

WHERE DO YOU LOOK FOR MAKEUP AND SKINCARE RECOMMENDATIONS?
I usually look to friends for recommendations, and honestly, beauty vloggers on YouTube if I have the time. I have many female friends in MLM (multi-level marketing) businesses, and I try to support them as much as possible too.

WHAT PRODUCTS ARE YOU LOVING RIGHT NOW?
My peach eyeshadow palette by Too Faced, and Lipsense lip color by Senegence. All the LuLaRoe!

WHEN DO YOU FEEL THE MOST CONFIDENT?
When I am comfortable in my clothing and have at the very least lipstick on.

Lexie is a thirty-year-old mom to three boys, sharing her love & knowledge of nature, art, music, and food with them.

Want your own Beauty Biography? Write it here.

I AM NOT A BEAUTY BLOGGER

I am not a beauty blogger…or, at least I didn’t set out to be one.z0nvqfroqwa-denys-nevozhaiInitially, I envisioned this space to be one of sharing. Of learning. Of collaboration. A place where the women in my life shared a bit about what they did on the daily to take care of themselves. The hope was that they would share it with the women in their lives and we could all have a good ‘ol laugh about crows feet and gray eyebrow hairs; or, we could all nod along as we read about the lack of time in the morning, and the confusion over which moisturizer was right for ‘sometimes dry, but actually, no, rather oily, OMG…why am I STILL breaking out!’ skin.

The impetus for starting this space was my piquing interest in the YouTube Beauty Community. If you aren’t familiar, there are a plethora of women creating beauty-related content ranging from skincare recommendations to ‘Get Ready with Me’ videos and everything in between. Watching these women made me realize that I didn’t know what the women in MY life did on a daily basis. I was giving so much credence to these literal “virtual strangers,” but would rarely speak with my friends IRL (that’s “In Real Life,” Mom) about skincare, favorite mascaras, or daily beauty rituals.  The few conversations I did have I likened to female-bonding exercises that left me feeling informed, and not alone in the quest to feel good about my (ahem, aging) appearance. If I wanted to know about this stuff, surely my friends did, too…and their friends…and their friends.  I curated a short questionnaire to send to my friends with the intent of posting a new “Beauty Biography” once or twice a week while creating my own (and your own) social network of beauty.

beauty [byoo-tee]: the quality present in a thing or person that gives intense pleasure or deep satisfaction to the mind… (dictionary.com)

But, like most things I do in life, there was a disconnect. Maybe it was my inability to articulate my idea clearly. I think I was blinded by what already existed in the world of beauty bloggers and vloggers: PRODUCTS.  But, I’m not interested in the newest product launch. I’m not going to review a pile of products because I do not purchase a pile of products. I don’t know anything about skincare, or makeup, outside of what I read in other blogs or watch on YouTube. I’m interested in what works and what the women I know, and trust, actually like and use. More importantly, I’m interested in what the women in my life do to take time for themselves. To feel good about themselves. I know that that I sometimes get lost in who I am, but devoting a few minutes a day to just me provides a little more clarity.

A lot of friends I approached were apprehensive to fill out their own Beauty Biography. I heard the following:

“What?”
“I don’t do anything.”
“I can’t write.”
“Er, I guess I’ll do it.”
I also heard nothing. No response. At all.

We all do something. Even if we think it’s nothing. I know this to be true because I’ve had in-depth conversations about “beauty-related matters” with the people that said they had nothing to say when approached about contributing to this space. (I also understand that it’s hard to talk about yourself. It is. Use an alias. No photo required. I have stock photos. All good). Maybe my questions were too focused. Maybe they didn’t reflect the vision. In a perfect world, they would be tailored to each and every person responding. I tried to be general. I tried.

I had a handful of supportive friends filled out the Beauty Biography. I had yet another handful of well-intentioned friends tell me that they were working on it. In the meantime, as not to become an absentee blog-owner, I threw together some filler posts until more Beauty Biographies arrived in my inbox. But it didn’t feel right. The blog wasn’t supposed to be about me. Unfortunately, my inbox remains empty.

So, if you are one of the people I approached, please reconsider submitting. I’d love to hear what you have to say. Or, send this to someone you think would like it.

If you are reading this and would like to fill out your own Beauty Biography, please get in touch via the Contact page or write it here.  I’m opening it up to ALL.

I love the responses I’ve received so far. I’m going to keep this space alive with the hope that it will become what I envisioned.

GLOSSIER FOLLOW-UP

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As promised, I am following up on the two Glossier masks mentioned in my FACE MASKS post from January. I was seeking out a detox mask to address my self-diagnosed, hormonal congestion, and with dry, winter skin staring me in the face every day I jumped on the Glossier bandwagon purchasing the Mega Greens Galaxy Pack and, it’s companion, the Moisturizing Moon Mask.

Here’s what Glossier says about this duo:

Our bestselling masks are designed to work in harmony to hit the reset button on your skin. One detoxifies, while the other hydrates. The Mega Greens Galaxy Pack goes on first. Made with a gentle white kaolin clay base, plus vitamin-rich beauty foods—think of it as a juice cleanse for your face. Rinse, and follow with the Moisturizing Moon Mask. It’s formulated with honey, aloe, and plant-based squalane to plump skin up with moisture and restore elasticity. Meanwhile, licorice root and lemon extracts gently brighten…

Glossier sells these masks separately for $22 each, or as a duo for $40. (I’m not that good at math, but I know a $4 savings when I see one.) Considering what I’ve spent on skincare in the past, these bargains were a no-brainer.

So, did they work?

Yes. I definitely felt smoother, softer skin after using the Mega Greens Galaxy Pack. My skin felt refreshed and clean. Was I “wowed” after one use? No. But my skin did not react with a breakout, so that’s a win. My chin seems to be clearing a bit and I do attribute some of that to using this mask a couple of times per week. The Moon Mask was most definitely hydrating. I do not have severely dry skin, but it can feel tight in the winter. This did the trick to keep it supple. Plus, it has ingredients to brighten hyperpigmentation. (Double duty in my book, folks.)

I’ve tried A LOT of different masks over the years. I’m trying to simplify my skincare routine and this is a no-nonsense mask duo that I always look forward to using. I will definitely be repurchasing.

TRYING TUMERIC*

*a BEAUTY BIOGRAPHY appendix

When it comes to any trend I am usually late to the party. Apparently, turmeric was listed as a “Rising Star” in the 2016 Google Food Trends Report. (So, if you are like me, check out what was cool last year and get on the caboose before we get any further into 2017.) I’ve seen a lot going around about the benefits of turmeric: it’s an anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, improves brain function, lowers the risk of heart disease, AND, due to it’s antiseptic and antibacterial properties, helps reduce acne. I’m listening, Turmeric.
img_8061Enter the Turmeric Latte, aka Golden Milk. A delicate concoction of turmeric, ginger, cinnamon, and milk (dairy or non). After some bleary-eyed, late-night web searching (none of which can be found again or referenced) I found out that drinking this magic elixir can help with breakouts. Experiencing what I call “hormonal acne” (self-diagnosed, mind you), I decided to give this sure to be tasty treat a try.

So far I’ve tried two different recipes: Creamy Turmeric Latte and 5 Minute Turmeric Tea Recipe. I like chai tea. I like curry. I like Golden Milk. I won’t lie…it’s kind of a messy hassle to make. It’s easy, but the stain power of turmeric means that precision pouring must prevail, or be ready with some washcloths if you want to save your countertops. To achieve the fancy, frothy, Portland-esque coffee bar appeal use an immersion blender.

It’s too early to know if my self-diagnosed hormonal acne will be eradicated by the enamored turmeric, but I’m willing to continue juggling a preschooler, baby and immersion blender each afternoon to find out. Stay tuned.

Have you ever tried a Turmeric Latte?

JILL & SHERI

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Today’s Beauty Biography features Sheri & Jill, mother & daughter.

WHAT IS YOUR FIRST BEAUTY MEMORY?
SHERI: High school and blue eye shadow with lots of mascara.
JILL: I remember my mom putting pink foam curlers in my long straight hair before bed so I would wake up with curls.

HOW HAS YOUR BEAUTY ROUTINE CHANGED OVERTIME?
SHERI: I wear less makeup, and I am more conscious of using moisturizer.
JILL: For years I used the Proactiv 3 step system which worked beautifully if I consistently cleansed morning and night. Over time I think it became too drying for my face and may have contributed to melasma on my forehead. I switched to a Clarisonic and a less drying cleansing wash.

WHERE DO YOU LOOK FOR MAKEUP AND SKINCARE RECOMMENDATIONS?
SHERI: Reading a lot on the internet.
JILL: I don’t search much for makeup, but I have done internet searches to find skincare information.

WHAT PRODUCTS ARE YOU LOVING RIGHT NOW?
SHERI: Brilliance Skin Care. Noxema for cleansing.
JILL: My Clarisonic and Exuviance Gentle Cleansing Cream. Perricone MD Blue Plasma Cleansing Treatment. Clinique Turnaround Daytime moisturizer; as well as, Clinique Turnaround Overnight– when I get around to actually washing my face before I go to bed!

WHEN DO YOU FEEL THE MOST CONFIDENT?
SHERI: Full makeup and dressed up.
JILL: I feel most confident when I am just done getting ready and leaving the house to go out on a date with my husband. I love it when I have a nice outfit and my hair is doing what I want it to do.

Jill is a thirtysomething newlywed and dental hygienist. Sheri is a sexagenarian that loves nature, gardening, knitting, sewing…well, anything with a needle. 😉

Want your own Beauty Biography? Write it here.